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California's GOP is up to its old tricks in running a recall and an anti-tax campaign

California's GOP is up to its old tricks in running a recall and an anti-tax campaign
State Sen. Josh Newman, right, talks with a supporter on April 28. (Nick Agro / For The Times)

To the editor: I don't know for whom I have more disdain: the people who signed the recall petition against state Sen. Josh Newman (D-Fullerton) because he voted to increase the state gas tax or the Republicans who can't find a worthy issue on which to campaign. ("Sen. Josh Newman in fight for his political life over vote to raise California's gas tax," May 8)

Without much thought, Republicans seem to reject all tax increases, an instinct primed by a noisy gas-tax repeal initiative that has been financed with $250,000 from Republican businessman John Cox and $300,000 from the campaign of Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach). Both are running for governor on this issue.

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Of course, both are trying to milk an anti-tax movement that Republicans use to emotionally squeeze voters, too many of whom do not understand the connection between taxes, vehicles, deteriorating roads and troubled transportation systems.

Jim Hoover, Huntington Beach

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To the editor: Good job trying to make Newman look like an innocent lamb caught up in a nasty political brawl. After all, he voted for the gas tax increase along with his fellow Democrats, and he can't be called to account for that.

The last thing the already over-burdened taxpayers in California need is a higher tax. The Democratic-controlled state Legislature has pulled out all the stops to protect Newman, even passing a new law designed to thwart his recall.

The article mentions the "popular conservative radio talk show on KFI-AM" but neglects to mention that Newman [used an expletive to describe] the show's hosts while addressing a college group. I say recall him.

Maureen Ballard, Rolling Hills Estates

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To the editor: How pathetic is the state GOP's accusation that Newman is treasonous for voting to increase the gas tax? When the power of the party trumps (pardon the pun) what's best for the people, we have really lost the focus of the function of our government, which is to provide for the common good.

It's also the fault of Americans who want police protection, schools, fire protection and better roads but don't want to pay for them. Other countries are glad to pay for these benefits, but we're more concerned about taking care of ourselves.

We get what we pay for.

Sandy Mishodek, Running Springs, Calif.

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